* For info about Comunidad de Madrid, not just the city, visit:
Calle Duque de Medinaceli, 2 (in front of Palace Hotel)
Metro: Banco de España (line 2) and Atocha (line 1)
- Tel.: (+34) 902 10 00 07
- Internet: www.turismomadrid.es (many languages such as Spanish, English, German, French, Italian, Chinese and Japanese).
The Madrid Autonomous Community hosts a large number of endangered species; something remarkable for an area significantly affected by a large metropolitan area. Bears are no longer to be seen in the Monte del Pardo, but the Imperial Eagle, the black vulture and other emblematic endangered species still have some of their main breeding areas in this region.
Some researchers even point to the fact, more based upon hope than upon reality, that the Iberian lynx is still present in the most remote areas of the region.
To the south, the landscape is very different: here the steppe is dominant and the scarce precipitation create dessert like landscape.
This area is often underrated by many visitors and Madrileños themselves, but it is enchanting and majestic in its austerity and is home to an astounishingly rich biodiversity.
The North and Eastern regions of the Madrid Autonomous Communitye are occupied by the Iberian Central range, which divides the Castilian meseta into two parts. Parts of these mountains are still surprisingly unspoilt, in spite of the many urban developments that have threatened their preservation in the last decades.
The landscape here is pleasant and rough at the same time.
Favorite thing: The Prado museum houses one of the world's great art collections. Spanish artists in the collection include Velazquez, Ribera, Murillo, El Greco, Goya, and Bosch. Many foreign artists are also exhibited in the Prado's collections.
Favorite thing: A famous statute of a goddess, Saturn's wife and Jupiter's mother, pulled by two lions is situated in the center of the Plaza de la Cibeles. This statue, completed in 1792, is described as the most popular in Madrid. The Statue of the Cibeles is now surrounded by a fountain with jets of water behind the goddess.
Favorite thing: Palacio Real was built between 1738 and 1764 and is the work of several architects. The Royal Palace is an enormous, almost square shaped building. The palace's public tours includes all kinds of sumptuous rooms. An important highlight of the palace tour is the Armory featuring an unusual collection of Spanish armor.
Favorite thing: Plaza Mayor. Completed in 1619 during Spain's Austrian period, Plaza Mayor exemplifies this period's architecture. When the Austrians ruled Spain, the square's 477 balconies were boxes for events that took place in the plaza below.
Check the Weather before you visit the Comunidad de Madrid:
- www.inm.es/web/infmet/predi/locali/MAM.html (Spanish)
Favorite thing: The Banco de Espana is situated on the southwest corner of the Plaza de la Cibeles.
Favorite thing: Plaza de Espana. A monument to the Spanish literary genius Cervantes is found here.
Favorite thing: La Casa de la Villa located in the historic center of Madrid, houses the main offices of the City Council.
Favorite thing: All Madrid streets are numbered from the Puerta del Sol, and several important Madrid streets originate in the Puerta del Sol,itself.
With most four-star hotels in Madrid (and throughout Western Europe) charging US$400 or more, the...more
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Good for: Solo